Former NASA scientist from Clayhall over the moon with his MBE
PUBLISHED: 11:30 07 January 2016 | UPDATED: 11:30 07 January 2016
A former NASA scientist has been recognised for his volunteering work in the borough.
Dr Suresh Chandra Vasishtha, 79, of Clayhall Avenue, Clayhall, has been awarded an MBE for services to the community in Redbridge.
The ex-University College London (UCL) PHD student has spent about three years working with Redbridge Council for Voluntary Services (CVS) and has been giving talks on age-related health issues, HIV, tuberculosis and diabetes.
He has spoken to more than 1,000 people in the past two years and continues to volunteer despite being retired.
“I’m feeling very proud and very pleased,” said Dr Vasishtha, who was once also chairman of the Redbridge Race Equality Council (RREC).
“I like to keep active and I have been working in the community for so long now, I don’t know how to stop really – it’s just something I do.”
The academic set off for America after completing his PHD in 1967 and spent four years working for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
He later returned to the UK to be a research lecturer at Queen Mary University and UCL.
He has also spent time teaching at Ilford County High School and Newham College.
Redbridge CVS health partnership manager Swati Vyas said she was “really thrilled” by the news.
“He has a lot of networks in the borough and he brings so much experience to the projects we run,” she said.
“He has a lot of knowledge and we can learn from him.”
She added: “He’s involved in so much work but he wants to spend his time with us and he wants to give back – it’s absolutely amazing.”
Dr Vasishtha said Redbridge was a “wonderful” borough.
“It’s been wonderful working here,” the veteran volunteer added.
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